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Sunday, September 6, 2009

Jeorge Keyt

Keyt's artistic career spanning more then sevan decades has enriched the treasury of art this country and won him recognition abroad as well. George keyt was born in the Sri Lankan hill capital kandy in 1901. His parents were Henry Keyt and Constancy sproule who were of indo-Dutch origin. He was educated at Trinity College one of the leading educational institutions in the Kandy area.

His passion for art began while he was still at school. Keyt won his first art prize at the age of 15 and his first public exhibit was a pen and ink drawing displayed at the annual exhibition of the Ceylon society of arts. Since 1947, George Keyt has held more then 25 one-man exhibitions in Sri Lanka.

Buddhism has played a leading role in the art and work of George Keyt.From an early age he was drawn towards the teaching of the Buddha and this influenced him in his works later in life.
He became greatly drawn towards Buddhism as soon as he understood the enduring appeal of its basic concepts, and while yet a very young man, championed the cause of Buddhist revival. He wrote profusely both prose and verse to Buddhist publications, While contributing decorative drawings on religious subjects as well" George Keyt has maintained a degree of individuality in his paintings from the start. His paintings have covered a number of varied themes from Buddhist and also musical moods.

The Jataka tales (stories of the previous lives of the Buddha) have also been featured extensively in his artwork. He has also done murals on temples in which the monastic, court and village life of the old times are depicted. these paintings are of great interest and rear quality.
George Keyt was a founder member of one of the most influential art groups in Sri Lanka in 1943, eight artist and keyt got together to from the 43 group in a number of European countries from 1952 on wards.

Several of Keyts painting were taken to London for exhibition and have been lying there for over 40 years. The George Keyt Foundations which was setup in 1988 to honor the artist and promote his work, now trying to get these painting returned to Sri Lanka. The foundation is also aiming to set up a modern art gallery to helf to young and aspiring artists and provide them a place to house their paintings.

The George Keyt foundation is situated at 42/5, Ananda Coomarasvamy Mavatha Colombo 3.

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